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Exercising in the Heat

Strategies for Exercising in the Heat:

Spring has sprung and things are really starting to heat up! But that doesn't mean you're banished to an air-conditioned gym for 6 months out of the year. Use these strategies to stay cool, comfortable and safe during these warm Sacramento months. 

Drink
The easiest way to avoid heat disorders is to keep your body hydrated. This means drinking fluids before, during and after exercise. Make sure you are also getting in electrolytes either through your hydration or electrolyte tablets. 

Light-colored, loose-fitting
This clothing will help your body breathe and cool itself down. Tight clothing restricts that process and dark colors absorb the sun's light and heat. Wear synthetic fabrics because they will wick moisture away from your skin so cooling evaporation can occur. Wear a hat as well.  

Workout Early or Late
Don’t workout between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., avoiding the middle of the day when the sun's intensity is greatest. Try to be on shady roads or trails. Morning is the coolest time of the day since the roads have not heated up yet.

Wear Sunscreen
Protect your skin with a waterproof sunscreen that has an SPF of at least 30 and offers broad spectrum protection (UVA and UVB).

Take It Easy
Slow down. Take longer easier paced breaks. Hot and humid conditions are not the time to try to push your pace. Save your hard efforts for cooler weather.

Get Wet
Use water to cool yourself during your workouts. If you are overheating, splashing water on your head and body will cool you down quickly and have a lasting effect as the water evaporates from your skin


Heat Exhaustion

Cause:
Not drinking enough to replenish water excreted through sweating, breath, and eliminating waste.

Symptoms:
Fatigue; goose bumps; weakness; muscle cramps or pains; headache; feeling faint or dizzy; nausea; vomiting; decreased coordination; possible fainting; skin that is cool, moist, pale, or flushed; and rapid pulse.

What to do:
Stop exercising and get inside, or rest in a cool, shaded area. Loosen or remove clothing.  Drink cool water or a sports drink.  Apply cool water to skin. 

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